Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Not liking the sound of my voice

My Mum didn't like the sound of her voice on recordings when we were kids. I didn't know why. It sounded the same as usual to me. And I loved to imagine hearing my own voice reading all the stories I wrote to make sure they came out right.

My Mum didn't used to like the way she looked in photographs either. But I learned to understand that recently when I joined the "Meeting the God of America" project. On the web site my photograph is reflected, to make me look at the writing instead of away. It feels wrong and I cringe when I see it. But it must be the same as the image I look at in mirrors every day. I guess I just grew up more accustomed to photographs than Mum did.

Still, going back to voices, I think I'm finally sharing my mother's dismay. I've started writing book reviews, and as soon as they're posted I always think there's something I want to change. There was I thinking writing could always be fixed by second thoughts. Then I became a contributor to "Poetic Monthly magazine" where I'm meant to write a column every month. I write and I edit and I read and I write and I listen to the voice in my head and it seems to sound all right. And then I send it off...

When I see my column in print I find I've grown up just like my Mum. I really don't like the sound of my voice on the page.


Jack W. Regan said...

My brother-in-law has a great singing voice, but he hates to hear it recorded.

I think dissatisfaction with the finished product is natural for a writer. In fact, it may be a good sign. It shows your inner editor is alive and kicking. The trick is to not obsess. That's always hard for me.

Anonymous said...

The key is to not compare youself to others. You will always find someone that looks better, sounds better or writes better (or in my case draws better).

I tend to look back at what I have done in the past and see my own growth. I can definitely see that in my drawing.

BUT...I found some papers I wrote in college and sit in awe that I was ever that talented..ha ha